Apple has yet another one-on-one Macs in education deal hatching, thanks to the success of the programme in the State of Maine.

A report this morning says that the Five Town school board has added its support to taking part in a state-sponsored scheme to provide laptops to the incoming students in its high schools. It's a rental deal that, if successful, will help the State of Maine furnish Mac notebooks to all students.

The State education commissioner must convince individual school districts around its area to take part in the new scheme, with a minimum 8,400 students required for it to go ahead. Individual districts need to sign up because the State has been unable to provide a stateside financial plan for the deal.

The deal costs $300 per seat per year across four-years. Teachers, administrators, technical coordinators and students will get a 12-inch G4 iBook, an AirPort Extreme card, carry case and insurance. They also get a full software applications package.

The use of Apple technology in Maine: "Not only leads the nation, but is recognized worldwide for its innovative approach and being a powerful tool for teaching and learning," the report says.

It appears the initiative has increased the "motivation and ability of students in special education to work independently". Other improvements have been seen in taking part in class, teacher-student interaction and personal organization.

"The quality and quantity of writing," has improved, and student attention spans have also seen benefit, according to the State.

Earlier this week Apple's education initiatives took a bump, when Henrico County School decided not to renew or extend its lease for Macs in its schools.

Apple had offered to trade-in Henrico's 18,000 iBooks handed out to students in 2001, for 23,000 new Macs.